Archway and Operation Write Home are partnering to make sure that our service members have plenty of Valentine cards and cookies—sweets for sweets!
So your mission, if you decide to take it, is to make a few Valentine’s Day cards (using the guidelines below) and send them to one of the shippers. If you would like you children to craft along with you, have these put their name on the back and right a little message to the service member. That’s right, there cards will go directly to a war hero.
Valentine’s cards must be sent to your shipper by December 1. Christmas cards are already on their way to our service members so they can send them back home in time for Christmas.
Here are a few guidelines for making cards for the troops. Remember that these cards are for the express purpose of a service member to send to their family at home.
- No glitter. Seriously. It's a hazard for our heroes, so we won't send cards with any glitter that will flake off the card. Read more.
- A2 sized cards. Most efficient for our shipping dollars, so we strongly recommend A2 (4.25" x 5.5" - half a sheet of cardstock). Read more.
- No store bought. Yep, pretty straightforward. Our heroes don't like them, so we send them our cards filled with love and creativity! Read more.
- Watch the deadlines. We have to mail cards 5-6 weeks ahead of a holiday, so check out the deadlines posted on our homepage, on the left side. Those are the very last last last dates, so aim for a couple weeks earlier if at all possible, since we start shipping 8 weeks ahead.
- Any quantity. One card to 100 to 500 — every card matters! We recommend quality over quantity...relax, do your best, and pour lots of love into each card!
- Limit multiples. Some folks like to make a lot of one design. While that's fine, it becomes a big problem in one particular instance: holiday cards. If you want to make a lot of those (over 30), please send them 8 weeks ahead (or more). That allows us to mix them into the most boxes; we often end up with 100 of one design arriving the last week, and if most of those holiday boxes had already been sent in weeks prior, those multiples will have to wait until next year.
- NEW: Do not violate copyright laws. If you use photography or illustrations on your cards, it must be your own, or you must have written permission to use them. We don't want OWH in trouble for copyright violation! This includes repurposing store bought cards or using art from magazines or books as a hero image on your card. Consult angel policies for your stamp manufacturers if you have questions on the usage of their images; this point is about using printed copyrighted images. [read more]
- NEW: Have kids make AnyHero cards. When making cards with children, please have them make AnyHero cards. Most children have the want-to but not the able-to when it comes to making use-able cards that our heroes will want to write home on. There are a few exceptions, and you can get more on that here. [read more]
- NEW: Do not handwrite sentiments. If you don't have a sentiment stamp to go with your card, feel free to let it be a card with no sentiment. Do not handwrite sentiments outside or inside the cards. We've gotten some emails from heroes' spouses indicating a momentary panic when a card from their husband had a woman's handwriting on it - and we want to avoid even a second of angst for these dear spouses! [read more]
You can read more suggestions here.
I hope you decide to participate. Now, I’ll be back later this week with a contest involving cards for our heroes.